The Head Office IT and Information Security Steering Committee governs and supports IT strategies, policies, projects and initiatives across all Al Baraka Group’s subsidiaries, and ensures that they are aligned with the Group's strategic objectives as well as each subsidiary's local strategy. The Group's short, medium and long-term IT strategies are now well established and standardised around carefully chosen core banking solutions that have been successfully implemented across all ABG’s subsidiaries. The Head Office IT and Information Security Steering Committee monitors the Group's IT strategy and updates it periodically to ensure it enables ABG to achieve its strategic objectives.
ABG's web-based financial consolidation and reporting solution measures corporate performance against key performance indicators based on the Group's strategic objectives. This solution is used to set benchmarks for each subsidiary and to monitor its performance on a continuous basis. It captures data from each subsidiary in its local currency and performs monthly, quarterly and annual consolidations in US dollars. The data is then collected, processed, reported and analysed across all subsidiaries.
All of the Group’s subsidiaries have in place core banking systems that were selected from a list approved by Head Office and this meets Central Bank’s requirements for greater automation. The subsidiaries are now introducing satellite systems in areas such as risk management, cyber security, internet and mobile banking as well as others. The Head Office’s IT and Information Security Steering Committee is working with subsidiaries to introduce systems that automate the process of complying with international Anti-Money Laundering and Know-Your-Client regulations, as well as the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA). These systems also screen transactions against the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions list.
Each subsidiary has a disaster recovery centre, which is tested and audited at least once a year. The Group has unified the standard of business continuity and disaster recovery, which helped all subsidiaries to adopt best practices. The Group further ensures that its subsidiaries have the right people, technology and policies in place to guard against cyber-attacks and frauds. It provides best practices frameworks and guidelines with oversight responsibilities to ensure compliance and effective implementation.